In "Wild Geese," Mary Oliver invites us into the world of the personal lyric poem. "Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine. / Meanwhile the world goes on." Oliver then describes the geese flying in "clean blue air." The poet Gregory Orr informs us, "Human culture 'invented' the personal lyric as a means of helping individuals survive existential crises." Since antiquity, poetry has served as a balm, a healing art. It can lift us from despair, redirecting our attention and revealing possibilities. Neuroscience shows that hearing or reading a poem can change the brain, as pathways of cognition, empathy, and connection engage. This can move us into a newly awakened awareness. In this course, we will read and discuss poems that reframe trauma and hard times. We will focus on healing in nature, in society, in everyday life. We will discuss honored ancient and modern poets. Their transformative moments will be our springboard. You are invited to bring passion, curiosity, and your unique voice to our classes. | Facilitated discussion; Listening to audio recordings.